The Value of Statistical Life

From FiveThirtyEight:

Economists might not be able to say how much an individual person’s existence is worth, but they have figured out a way to calculate how much how much the average person is willing to pay to reduce the risk of death — which allows them to put a price tag on the collective value of saving one life. That figure, which currently hovers somewhere around $9 or $10 million, is known as the “value of statistical life,” and it’s the basis for all kinds of high-stakes decisions that involve tradeoffs between public safety and economic cost — from food and automobile regulations to our responses to climate change.

Intelligent decisions are made with the coldest of blood. Ask the economists.

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